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1754 King George II commissioned Capt. John Reynolds as "Captain-General and Governor-in-Chief of His Majesty's Province of Georgia, and Vice-Admiral of the same." A few days later, he sailed from England, arriving in Georgia on October 29.
1779 In Augusta, John Wereat was elected president of the Georgia patriot temporary government known as the Supreme Executive Council.
1864 Following Sherman's orders, Maj. Gen. Schofield marched on Confederate Maj. Gen. Bates' division at Utoy Creek southwest of Atlanta. The strategy was to advance through the Confederate lines and capture the railroad junction at East Point. At 10 am, the Battle of Utoy Creek began. Twice, Union Brig. Gen. Reilly's brigade charged the Confederates, but on each occasion they were turned back. Schofield then called the battle off. Union casualties exceeded 300, while the Confederates losses were about 20. Though not a major battle, the Confederate victory convinced Sherman to abandon frontal attacks on Atlanta's Confederate defenders.
For more, see This Week in Georgia Civil War History.
1887 In what is considered to be the first mass murder in Georgia history, the Woolfolk family murders occurred in Bibb County. At four in the morning Captain Richard Woolfolk, his wife Mattie, other son 20 year old Dick Woolfolk his brother 5 year old Charlie Woolfolk, 17 year old Pearl Woolfolk, Mattie's Great Aunt Temperance West down for a visit, 10 year old Annie Woolfolk, 7 year old Rosebud Woolfolk and the baby of the family 18 month old Mattie Woolfolk were all murdered with an axe in the Hazzard District of North Bibb County. The Captain's oldest son Tom escaped by jumping out of a window and running down to the bottom of the hill where the former slaves now share croppers lived. They refused to return with him to help the family so Tom went on his own. By daybreak on August 6th word had gotten out to all of Bibb County and people began showing up at the house. The mood was that Tom was guilty and he was arrested on the spot more so for his safety than anything else at that time. Also at that time a coroner's jury was put together and after examining the bodies and listening to witness testimony they decided that all the members had died of axe wounds and that Tom Woolfolk had committed the murders. He would go through five trials and numerous appeals before finally being convicted of the murders and hanged on October 29, 1890. [Information submitted by Cal Rogers]
See Macon Weekly Telegraph coverage of the case.
1907 Gov. Hoke Smith signed an act instituting statewide prohibition in Georgia, effective Jan. 1, 1908. Some whites had unfairly blamed the 1906 Atlanta race riot on drinking by black residents, and supporters of prohibition used this argument to push for a statewide ban on the manufacture, sale, barter, or giving away of alcoholic beverages in Georgia. [In 1916, the General Assembly would extend prohibition to include the use or possession of alcoholic beverages.]
1913 During the ninth day of the trial of Leo Frank. Judge L.S. Roan ruled that testimony that Jim Conley had acted as a lookout for Leo Frank was admissible. Applause broke out in the courtroom; Frank's attorneys immediately contended that any further such actions would be cause for a mistrial; Judge roan threatened to clear the courtroom if order was not maintained. Luther Rosser again questioned Jim Conley, again failing to break his story. Conley spent 16 hours total on the witness stand. Dr. Roy Harris, secretary of the State Board of Health who had had his testimony interrupted by illness, resumed his testimony. He insisted Mary Phagan was killed shortly after eating her last meal of cabbage and bread, and that she had died from strangulation, not from the blows to her head. Click here for a detailed accounting of the case.
1914 Ellen Louise Axson Wilson, wife of Pres. Woodrow Wilson, died. Four days later, a funeral train bearing her body passed through Atlanta on the way to Rome, where she was buried in the Axson family plot in Myrtle Hill Cemetery.
1958 The caravan of seven covered wagons from Dahlonega bearing 43 ounces of gold to cover the state capitol dome arrived at the city limits of Atlanta.
Unfortunately, city officials had overlooked the event, and no Atlanta representatives were there to greet the wagon train. After some phone calls, the director of Piedmont Park agreed to let them spend the night there. Atlanta police then escorted the wagon train to the park, where the riders camped out on the final night of their trip. City officials also hurried out to welcome the group.
1972 Hank Aaron hit his 661st home run in a Braves uniform, setting the Major League record for most home runs by a player for a single franchise.
2010 Earlier in the day, Atlanta Braves pitching great Tom Glavine was inducted into the Braves Hall of Fame. During his career, Glavine was two Cy Young awards and was selected to play in ten All-Star Games.
That evening, at ceremonies in Turner Field , the Braves retired Glavine's number – 47.
As part of the ceremony, Glavine's number was unveiled along the railing at the top of the stadium where Braves' retired numbers are displayed.
As it turned out, the evening was historic for another reason. Glavine's ceremony occurred before the Braves' game with the San Francisco Giants, which marked the Braves' 20,000th game since the franchise began in Boston.
Glavine became the seventh Braves player and the fourth Braves pitcher to have his number retired. In addition to the retired numbers of Braves players, Jackie Robinson's number – 42 – has been retired by all major league teams. [Click here for the story of the Braves' retired numbers.]
Georgia cities and towns incorporated by acts approved on Aug. 6:
1903 Baconton (Mitchell County), Barney (Brooks County), and Nunez (Emanuel County)
1904 Scott (Johnson County)
1906 Cairo (Grady County)
1908 Kingsland (Camden County)
1909 Fry (Fannin County)
1913 Meansville (Pike County)
1920 Stockbridge (Henry County)
Other acts affecting Georgia cities and towns approved on Aug 6:
1904 Name of Harmony Grove (Jackson County) changed to Commerce
1924 Name of Bullochville (Meriwether County) changed to Warm Springs, and the charter of Village of Warm Springs repealed.
In Their Own Words on This Day. . .
1740 William Stephens wanted to make a positive report to the Trustees back in England, but struggled on how to do it:
Source: William Stephens, A Journal of the Proceedings in Georgia (London: 1742) as reprinted (no city cited: Readex Microprint Corp.,1966) Vol. II, p. 466.
1864 John Banks of Columbus, Ga. had seven sons who fought for the Confederacy, three of whom were killed in Sherman's Atlanta Campaign. In his journal for this day, Banks sadly recorded the death of one his sons. [Click here to view the grave site of Willis Banks.]
Source: John Banks, Autobiography of John Banks, 1797 - 1870 (Austell, Ga.: privately printed by Elberta Leonard, 1936), pp. 32-33.
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